Tag Archives: Women
[unable to retrieve full-text content]Rule #1 for employers: Be transparent.
Oracle allegedly underpaid thousands of women and minority employees by $ 401 million over four years, according to a document filed Tuesday by the US Department of Labor, as part of an ongoing discrimination lawsuit against the software giant.
In the document, the Labor Department also claims that Oracle strongly prefers hiring Asians with student visas for certain roles because they are “dependent upon Oracle for sponsorship in order to remain in the United States,” so the company can systematically underpay them. Between 2013 and 2016, the department says, 90 percent of the 500 engineers hired through its college-recruiting program for product development jobs at its headquarters in California were Asian. Over the same four years, only six were black.
Once they are employed, Oracle also systematically underpays women, blacks, and Asians relative to their peers, the complaint claims, alleging that these disparities are driven by Oracle’s reliance on prior salaries in setting starting salaries and the company’s practice of steering black, Asian, and female employees into lower paid jobs. The department says some women were underpaid by as much as 20 percent compared with their male peers, or $ 37,000 in 2016.
“Oracle’s suppression of pay for its non-White, non-male employees is so extreme that it persists and gets worse over long careers; female, Black, and Asian employees with years of experience are paid as much as 25 percent less than their peers,” according to an updated complaint filed Tuesday. “Oracle’s compensation practices cause an increasing pay gap as those employees devote more of their lives to Oracle.” The Labor Department began investigating because Oracle has government contracts worth more than $ 100 million a year.
Oracle did not respond to a request for comment.
The document says Oracle underpaid more than 1,200 female employees by $ 165 million, more than 2,700 Asian employee by $ 234 million, and a smaller number of black employees by $ 1.3 million. The government’s case looks primarily at employees in product development, IT, and support roles at Oracle’s Redwood City, California, headquarters. In 2014, the department says, Oracle employed 7,500 of its 45,000 US employees at the Redwood City office. The agency claims that the total cost of Oracle’s discriminatory practices are likely “much higher” than $ 400 million because the company’s discrimination has continued since 2016.
The government’s allegations against Oracle echo those in a private lawsuit by former Oracle employees who say the company discriminated against them on the basis of sex. On Friday, lawyers for that group alleged in a new court filing that Oracle paid women $ 13,000 less than men in comparable jobs with comparable experience, based on expert analysis of Oracle’s pay data.
Pay equity is an increasingly high-profile issue in Silicon Valley, part of a broader examination of race and gender discrimination in hiring, promotion, and funding, as well as sexual harassment. When 20,000 Google employees walked out to protest the company’s practices in November, pay equity was ranked second in their list of demands.
The government lawsuit, which began in January 2017, was filed by the department’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs and will be decided by an administrative law judge. The OFCCP is demanding that Oracle pay injured employees and applicants for lost wages and to correct discriminatory practices, including additional hiring.
But a bigger threat to Oracle may be the OFCCP’s demand to cancel all of Oracle’s government contracts and to bar the company from future contracts until it complies. The same office sued Google, which is also a federal contractor, for discrimination against women, alleging systemic bias against female employees. That case has been delayed while the two sides argue over how much pay data the government can get from Google.
Annual diversity reports published by major Silicon Valley companies show low numbers of under-represented minorities. In the four years since they began sharing the information, there has been little progress in improving those ratios to reflect the diversity of the industry’s billions of consumers around the world. Employers often allege that the numbers stem from a shortage of qualified candidates.
The OFCCP’s claims about systemic race discrimination at Oracle are based on comparing the number of recent college graduates of a particular race hired by Oracle versus the number of graduates at the schools where Oracle recruited and who had the degrees Oracle targeted.
However, the agency says its figures are incomplete because, it says, Oracle did not track race or ethnicity for the majority of applicants and deleted data requested by the Labor Department, including an email inbox where college recruits submitted their resumes. “There is a presumption that the information Oracle has refused to produce or destroyed was unfavorable to Oracle,” the complaint says.
Oracle tried to dismiss the Labor Department’s case based on the method for choosing administrative law judges. But last week, an administrative law judge ruled against Oracle.
More Great WIRED Stories
Every once in a while I get a comment from an audience member after a keynote speech or from someone who read my book, Mapping Innovation, about why so few women are included. Embarrassed, I try to explain that, as in many male dominated fields, women are woefully underrepresented in science and technology.
The preponderance of evidence shows that women can vastly improve innovation efforts, but are often shunted aside. In fact, throughout history, men have taken credit for discoveries that were actually achieved by women. So, while giving women a larger role in innovation would be just and fair, even more importantly it would improve performance.
The Power of Diversity
Over the past few decades there have been many efforts to increase diversity in organizations. Unfortunately, all too often these are seen more as a matter of political correctness than serious management initiatives. After all, so the thinking goes, why not just pick the best man for the job?
The truth is that there is abundant scientific evidence that diversity improves performance. For example, researchers at the University of Michigan found that diverse groups can solve problems better than a more homogenous team of greater objective ability. Another study that simulated markets showed that ethnic diversity deflated asset bubbles.
While the studies noted above merely simulate diversity in a controlled setting there is also evidence from the real world that diversity produces better outcomes. A McKinsey report that covered 366 public companies in a variety of countries and industries found that those which were more ethnically and gender diverse performed significantly better than others.
The problem is that when you narrow the backgrounds, experiences and outlooks of the people on your team, you are limiting the number of solution spaces that can be explored. At best, you will come up with fewer ideas and at worst, you run the risk of creating an echo chamber where inherent biases are normalized and groupthink sets in.
How Women in Particular Improve Performance
While increasing diversity in general increases performance, there is also evidence that women specifically have a major impact. In fact, in one wide ranging study, in which researchers at MIT and Carnegie Mellon sought to identify a general intelligence score for teams, they not only found that teams that included women got better results, but that the higher the proportion of women was, the better the teams did.
At first, the finding seems peculiar, but when you dig deeper it begins to make more sense. The study also found that the high performing teams members rated well on a test of social sensitivity and took turns when speaking. Perhaps not surprisingly, women do better on these parameters than men do.
Social sensitivity tests ask respondents to infer someone’s emotion by looking at a picture (you can try one here) and women tend score higher than men. As for taking turns while in a conversation, there’s a reason why we call it “mansplaining” and not “womensplaining.” Women usually are better listeners.
The findings of the study are consistent with something I’ve noticed in my innovation research. The best innovators are nothing like the mercurial, aggressive stereotype, but tend to be quiet geniuses. Often they aren’t the types that are immediately impressive, but those who listen to others and generously share insights.
Changing The Social Dynamic
One of the reasons that women often get overlooked, besides good old fashioned sexism, is that that there are vast misconceptions about what makes someone a good innovator. All too often, we imagine the best innovators to be like Steve Jobs–brash, aggressive and domineering–when actually just the opposite is true.
Make no mistake, great innovators are great collaborators. That’s why the research finds that successful teams score high in social sensitivity, take turns talking and listening to each other rather, rather than competing to dominate the conversation. It is never any one idea that solves a difficult problem, but how ideas are combined to arrive at an optimal solution.
So while it is true that these skills are more common in women, men have the capacity to develop them as well. In fact, probably the best way for men to learn them is to have more exposure to women in the workplace. Being exposed to a more collaborative working style can only help.
So besides the moral and just aspects of getting more women into innovation related fields and giving them better access to good, high paying jobs, there is also a practical element as well. Women make teams more productive.
Building The Next Generation
Social researchers have found evidence that that the main reason that women are less likely to go into STEM fields has more to do with cultural biases than it does with any innate ability. For example, boys are more encouraged to build things during play and so develop spatial skills early on, while girls can build the same skills with the same training.
Cultural bias also plays a role in the amount of encouragement young students get. STEM subjects can be challenging, and studies have found that boys often receive more support than girls because of educators’ belief in their innate talent. That’s probably why even girls who have high aptitude for math and science are less likely to choose a STEM major than boys of even lesser ability.
Yet cultural biases can evolve over time and there are a number of programs designed to change attitudes about women and innovation. For example Girls Who Code provides training and encouragement for young women and UNESCO’s TeachHer initiative is designed to provide better educational opportunities.
Perhaps most of all, initiatives like these can create role models and peer support. When young women see people like the Jennifer Doudna, Jocelyn Bell Burnell and the star physicist Lisa Randall achieve great things in STEM fields, they’ll be more likely to choose a similar path. With more women innovating, we’ll all be better off.
FILE PHOTO: The Intel logo is shown at E3, the world’s largest video game industry convention in Los Angeles, California, U.S. June 12, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Intel Corp has increased the ratio of women and African-Americans in its workforce after three years of a high-profile effort to improve diversity, the U.S. microchip maker said in a report released on Monday.
Intel still lags behind several large U.S. technology companies in terms of women and ahead of many for African Americans and Hispanics, the report showed. Chronic underrepresentation of minorities has been a source of concern for years at tech companies.
Overall, women comprised 26.8 percent of Intel’s U.S. workforce in 2018, up from 24.7 percent in 2015. Women in leadership positions grew to 20.7 percent from 17.7 percent.
The percentage of African Americans at Intel has risen to nearly 5 percent from 3.5 percent in 2015 and Hispanics rose to 9.2 percent from 8.3 percent.
“Although we are among the leaders in African American representation in the tech industry, we are still not satisfied,” Barbara Whye, Intel’s chief diversity and inclusion officer said by email. The company will continue to work with historically black colleges and the Oakland Unified School District in California, she added.
Without providing figures, Intel said it had reached “full representation” two years ahead of its goal based on skilled minorities in the available workforce.
In 2015, Intel established a $ 300 million fund to be used by 2020 to improve diversity. Whites make up 46.2 percent of the workforce at the company, and Asians 38.9 percent, according to Intel.
Intel’s African American 2018 representation was better than at Facebook Inc, Alphabet Inc, and Microsoft Corp, according to the companies’ latest data.
But its female representation was behind Facebook, Alphabet, Amazon.com Inc, Apple Inc , and only ahead of Microsoft.
Reporting By Jane Lanhee Lee; Editing by Richard Chang
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Women at Microsoft Corp working in U.S.-based technical jobs filed 238 internal complaints about gender discrimination or sexual harassment between 2010 and 2016, according to court filings made public on Monday.
The figure was cited by plaintiffs suing Microsoft for systematically denying pay raises or promotions to women at the world’s largest software company. Microsoft denies it had any such policy.
The lawsuit, filed in Seattle federal court in 2015, is attracting wider attention after a series of powerful men have left or been fired from their jobs in entertainment, the media and politics for sexual misconduct.
Plaintiffs’ attorneys are pushing to proceed as a class action lawsuit, which could cover more than 8,000 women.
More details about Microsoft’s human resources practices were made public on Monday in legal filings submitted as part of that process.
The two sides are exchanging documents ahead of trial, which has not been scheduled.
Out of 118 gender discrimination complaints filed by women at Microsoft, only one was deemed“founded” by the company, according to the unsealed court filings.
Attorneys for the women described the number of complaints as“shocking” in the court filings, and said the response by Microsoft’s investigations team was“lackluster.”
Companies generally keep information about internal discrimination complaints private, making it unclear how the number of complaints at Microsoft compares to those at its competitors.
In a statement on Tuesday, Microsoft said it had a robust system to investigate concerns raised by its employees, and that it wanted them to speak up.
Microsoft budgets more than $ 55 million a year to promote diversity and inclusion, it said in court filings. The company had about 74,000 U.S. employees at the end of 2017.
Microsoft said the plaintiffs cannot cite one example of a pay or promotion problem in which Microsoft’s investigations team should have found a violation of company policy but did not.
U.S. District Judge James Robart has not yet ruled on the plaintiffs’ request for class action status.
A Reuters review of federal lawsuits filed between 2006 and 2016 revealed hundreds containing sexual harassment allegations where companies used common civil litigation tactics to keep potentially damning information under wraps.
Microsoft had argued that the number of womens’ human resources complaints should be secret because publicizing the outcomes could deter employees from reporting future abuses.
A court-appointed official found that scenario“far too remote a competitive or business harm” to justify keeping the information sealed.
Reporting by Dan Levine; Additional reporting by Salvador Rodriguez; Editing by Bill Rigby, Edwina Gibbs and Bernadette Baum
A communications consultancy dedicated exclusively to the esports market is launching today. The Story Mob, co-founded by Nicola Piggott (former lead of esports communications at Riot Games), Anna Rozwandowicz (former VP of Communications at ESL), and Kalie Moore (former head of communications at BITKRAFT Esports Ventures), have a combined 12 years in shaping how the world views esports.
The aforementioned BITKRAFT Esports Ventures is also investing in the new operation.
With an diverse client list at launch, including global esports teams Team Liquid and Fnatic, energy drink Red Bull, and VC firm, BITKRAFT Esports Ventures, DOJO Madness and streaming service Split Media Labs, The Story Mob is hoping to provide counsel to both endemic esports brands and those looking to enter the space. And what stands out the most is that there are 3 females in charge in an industry that is known to be dominated by males.
I spoke with the founders to get some insight as to why they left their former jobs to get involved in this exciting startup.
Why is a communications consultancy needed in the esports industry?
Nicola: Clear and consistent communications strategies have typically been an afterthought for the esports industry. We believe that esports fans are the most valuable fan community in the world, but that reaching them with authentic and credible communications is almost impossible without a first hand knowledge of their hopes, concerns and passions. That’s where we can help.
In today’s PR/comms landscape, there’s a gap in the market for a firm that relates directly to esports fans and dedicates all their resources to helping brands speak to them successfully. With over a decade’s experience working with the largest esports communities in the world, we believe that we can be part of designing a future where brands and companies can offer them more value and, in turn, understand them better.
What do you think esports needs to improve when it comes to communications?
Anna: Newer brands entering the space need to commit to more than slapping a logo on a lower third or retweeting winner congratulations – they need to talk to the fans with humor and humility, and offer value.
For teams and competitive brands within the esports space, there are different challenges. We work with clients on making communications timely, transparent and authentic. In a fast moving industry, bumps will happen along the road, but fans need to trust your values and intentions through it all.
Why did you raise money?
Kalie: I’ve been involved in the startup scene/venture capital world for six years, and I’m aware of the stats. Only 2.2% of VC funding went to female founding teams in 2017, which is an insanely low stake. We knew that a communications consultancy isn’t a traditional VC business, but at the same time, we are aware of the value of having the right strategic partners in your corner.
Jens Hilgers, the Managing Partner at BITKRAFT Esports Ventures, was my introduction to esports. After an initial meeting to discuss BITKRAFT’s communication strategy, he invited me to attend IEM Katowice. On the drive from Berlin to Poland he shared the entire history of esports, and after spending two days at the event, I was hooked. I’m incredibly grateful to Jens for his introduction to esports, and also for giving me a seat at the table when it came to meeting other executives in the space. We are also proud to be BITKRAFT’s first investment in an all female founding team.
More than a dozen women have stepped forward to accuse Fox News CEO Roger Ailes of sexual harassment in the days since a former host for the channel filed a related lawsuit against Ailes, according to New York magazine.
Gretchen Carlson, who hosted “The Real Story with Gretchen Carlson” until last month, alleged that Ailes subjected her to “severe and persistent” sexual harassment. She also claims that Ailes fired her in June in a retaliatory move after she rejected his sexual advances. Ailes has called Carlson’s accusations “false.” Read more…
Cheryl Gnad selected for her outstanding leadership and commitment within her profession
(PRWeb March 27, 2016)
Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2016/03/prweb13284668.htm